September 15, 2011

Africa must improve security cooperation in battling extremists or face the prospect of a continent-wide terror network threatening the region and the United States, a top US commander warned Wednesday.

General Carter Ham, head of US African command AFRICOM, said countries in North Africa face increasing threats from terrorist groups like Al-Qaeda affiliates who wish to join forces — as well as from extremists in Libya who might fan out to other locales, bringing a proliferation of weapons and an exodus of people from the war-torn country.

“Al-Qaeda main may be somewhat diminished, but the affiliates, both acknowledged and those who would like to be affiliated, may be gaining in capacity. And that’s what I see in Africa and that’s what concerns me,” Ham told reporters in Washington.

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